WHAT'S HAPPENING WITH THE SELLWOOD BRIDGE?
It's been nearly two years since a neighborhood-backed plan was approved to rebuild the Sellwood Bridge with only two auto lanes, along with bike and pedestrian paths and street car tracks. But in recent months the final decisions on bridge design and funding have hit stumbling blocks. While the bridge is operated by the County, it connects on the west side with state-owned Highway 43 and on the eastside with city-owned SE Tacoma Street. These different jurisdictions are now caught up in a turf battle, holding the future of the Sellwood Bridge between their horns. On this episode of Locus Focus we talk with Sellwood neighborhood activist Eric Miller about some of the sticking points between the city, county and state, and why the same issues of sustainability and livability that motivated the neighborhood to organize two years are still of major concern.
Eric Miller is a Sellwood resident and a current At-Large SMILE Board member. A public health physical therapist, Eric is currently a stay-at-home Dad and a community activist. He co-founded the Sellwood Playgroup Association to bring families with young children together and to build community. Through the Playgroup Association he organized a broad network of neighbors who helped prevent the Sellwood Bridge from being replaced by a huge, four-lane behemoth.